Leg cramps during pregnancy
Things to be done while you are in pain
You may have read that getting too little calcium and potassium can lead to leg cramps or that getting too much phosphorus can have the same effect because it can keep you from absorbing enough calcium. But no good studies back up whichever of those theories. It is a good idea, though, to make sure you're getting enough calcium while you're pregnant. If you do not your growing baby will leach what he needs from your bones, which can put you at higher risk for osteoporosis later. Be certain not to take calcium supplements that contain bone meal or dolomite, which can contain dangerous levels of lead.
Exercises to be done to reduce pain
Keep away from standing or sitting with your legs crossed for long periods of time. Stretch your calf muscles repeatedly during the day and several times before you go to bed. Rotate your ankles and wiggle your toes as you sit, eat dinner, or watch TV. You should take a walk every day, unless your midwife or doctor has advised you not to exercise. Avoid getting too tired during pregnancy. Lie down on your left side to progress circulation in your legs. Stay well-hydrated during the day by drinking water regularly. Try a warm bath before bed to relax your muscles. There's some evidence that taking a magnesium supplement in addition to a prenatal vitamin may have some benefit. But check with your provider before taking any kind of supplement during pregnancy. If you do get a cramp, right away stretch your calf muscles, straighten your leg, heel first, and gently flex your toes back toward your shins. It may hurt at first, but it will ease the spasm and the pain will steadily go away. You can unwind the cramp by massaging the muscle or warming it with a hot-water bottle.
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